Public votes against name change for Leicestershire Police
An online survey to gauge public support for renaming Leicestershire Police to include Rutland in the title has seen the majority of residents reject the proposal.
With Hampshire Constabularly in the process of renaming itself to include the Isle of Wight, which it also covers, it had been suggested that Leicestershire Police might also change its name to include both county names.
Leicester, Leicestershire and Rutland police and crime commissioner Rupert Matthews launched the poll after noting that: “Many communities in Rutland do not feel a natural affinity with Leicestershire Police. And this is not helped by the name of the force being ‘Leicestershire Police’.”
The suggestion was criticised by the Leicester Police Federation, with chair Adam Commons describing it as “nonsense” and a complete waste of resources at a time when the force needs more officers, Tasers and other equipment.
Mr Matthews said the consultation had been a huge success sparking considerable public engagement.
“I would like to thank everybody who took the time to contribute their opinions in this survey. I’m astounded by the number of responses we have had and it further confirms to me the importance of communication with the public on matters of policing,” he said.
“The consultation cost nothing as it was managed entirely online and was a resounding success. We have been overwhelmed with the strength of feeling shown and willingness for local people to use their voice on this important issue.
“Before pursuing the opportunity of a rename any further, we did the right thing, which was to consult the public. Local people are quite clearly against the proposal and I will fully abide by their decision.
“Responses to the survey has highlighted, however, serious concerns among some residents in Rutland about how policing is delivered in their county. This builds on other comments that have been made to me during visits to that county. In response, I will raise these with the chief constable at the earliest opportunity and will be keen to see what action can be taken to address any issues.